March winds and April showers

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March winds and April showers
Make way for sweet May flowers
And then comes June, a moon and you
March winds and April showers
Romance will soon be ours
An outdoor paradise for two
March winds and April showers
Make way for sweet May flowers
And then comes June, a moon and you
March winds and April showers
Make way for the happy hours
And the May time, June time, love time and you
March winds and April showers
Make way for sweet May flowers
And then comes June, a moon and you
March winds and April showers
Romance will soon be ours
An outdoor paradise for two
(The original song by Louis Silvers – 1921)

This is how our TM of the morning, Hector Perez, opened our meeting today. I found it refreshing and uplifting. And this is what I love most at M.E.A.T., all members are encouraged to strecht their boundaries, and creativity is always welcomed. In other words, surprise us, the audience!

A Word of the Day sets the tone of the meeting, and Karla Viebahn, the grammarian, gave us, ESCAPE. Interesting enough it came to my mind how we have been trying to escape the current pandemic situation for the past year… get away, evade, elude, miss, avoid, leak… “

As officer’s election was also in the agenda of the day, Zsófia Bodó took the hook and warmed us up with her creative and fun Table Topics, where the participants had to “sell” themselves to the audience to some very funny and weird hypothetical Vice President positions, such as VP of Cakes & Cookies, VP of Spring Cleaning, VP of Boring TT, and many more. Once more, creativity taking place.

Then, comes the most expected moment in every meeting: the prepared speeches. Christina
Bolte and Florian Allwein, were on the spotlight today.

Christina challenged us with the provocative question: Are you a star? (what comes to your mind?)
It was interesting to hear what her evaluator, Claudia Pichlmeier, said about it. She told us that the first thing that came to her mind was Lady Gaga. Then, when Christina showed a picture of a starfish, then a picture of a star soup, she said she got confused, because she couldn’t figure out where Christina was taking us with her speech but… this confusion led her to get curious, and pay more attention to what Christina had to say. (hummm…Note to self: Confusion can work as a hook. But… be careful there!)
Our second speaker, Florian, opened up our minds to the world of Cloud Computing. And how our laptop is a lever to move the world, and why. I loved this analogy: laptop = lever.
Another interesting approach came from our Ah-Counter, Naomi Isaacs, when in her report she told us that she rather have a few Uhmm, Ahms… and have an energertic and live delivery, than a spotless pronounciation with a emotionless delivery. (loved this one )
All in all, my takes from today’s meeting are:

  1. Allow yourself to be creative. Surprise your audience. Bring new ideas. (Especially when you are the Toastmaster of the day)
  2. Use analogies, methafors, rhetorical devices to enrich your speech. It will help you to convey your message more effectively
  3. Rather be real, than boring. & Too much polishing can take away your own essence.
    Nevertheless, a good meeting is not only fun, creative and has good speeches. A good meeting respects and value TIME. Your time, my time, each person’s time.
    And, at M.E.A.T. we once more proved that. Our timing was spot on. ‘

Well done guys!

Tulia Lopes
M.E.A.T. VP Membership 2020/21